17 October 2015, the Green News TV [Green News TV] reported that military officers summoned the villagers of ‘Kon Mae Sot Rak Tin’ group who have opposed the land expropriation in Wang Tha Kien village, Tha Sai Luad sub-district, Mae Sot district, Tak province, for building an industrial estate as part of the Special Economic Zone’s policy. Previously on 15 and 16 October 2015, the villagers organised a forum to discuss about the government’s policy of Special Economic Zone and invited a group of environmental journalists for covering news in the locality.
According to the news report, security forces, plain-cloth and uniformed, had closely monitored the media’s group and sent some officers to guard around accommodations of the group during the first 2 days of media visit in the area. The Mae Sot police admitted that they received an order to closely monitor the group of journalists for these 3 days.
In the evening of 16 October 2015, some army rangers told some of the Wang Tha Kien villagers that Maj. Gen. Nopporn Ruen-chan, the commander of the Narasuan Force, summoned them to meet him at the local administration office of Tha Sai Luad sub-district, at 9.00 on 17 October 2015.
The villagers were not clearly informed of the purpose of the summon and the agenda of the meeting with the military. The verbal order delivered by the rangers did not specify the names of who were summoned for the meeting. Therefore, they did not go and there has been no reaction from the military so far.